Criminals are increasingly turning to computer technology to commit offences, with police noting the volume of data its cyber forensics department needed to examine had surged more than four fold over the past two years. Chief Superintendent Wong Fook-chuen, of the Commercial Crime Bureau, released figures illustrating the rising trend of cyber crime as he introduced the force's new $4 million Computer Forensics Laboratory at police headquarters in Wan Chai yesterday. In all, 12 forensic examiners work at the new laboratory, analysing cyber crime data cloned from original evidence to aid investigators. Superintendent Wong pointed out that 4,766 gigabytes (GB) of crime data had undergone cyber forensic examination last year, four times higher than the 1,084 GB in 2000. So far this year, 3,373 GB of data has required examination. One GB of data was equivalent to about a billion letters, Superintendent Wong explained. Head of the bureau's technology crime division, Senior Superintendent Ng Kam-wing, said the number of computer crimes was also on the rise. He said there were 182 such crimes in the first eight months of this year and this number is projected to rise to 270 by the end of the year - compared with 235 cases recorded last year. Mr Ng added officers had recently noted a new cyber crime tactic in which offenders copied the Web sites of famous organisations in the territory - one of which is understood to be the Hong Kong Jockey Club - to cheat money out of unsuspecting clients from outside the SAR. Posing as staff from the institutions, he said the culprits would tell victims they had won a lucky draw and ask them to click on to the bogus Web site. They should then ask them to pay registration fees. The police also expressed concern that some youngsters had created on-line groups for playing computer games using the names of triad societies.